The Weight Loss Mind Workout Part 2

The Weight Loss Mind Workout Part 2

Hello my Amazing People,

This is the concluding piece of ‘The Weight Loss Mind Workout’. In this article, we shall look some pertinent questions we need answered, that can help you succeed in a weight loss program. Some important considerations are also earmarked in the article:

Are you Patient?

Now this is a massive issue, for those who have had to lose weight the right way. This is the slow, sometimes painful and gradual way of doing it.  Losing weight does not happen overnight, and the entire process can be frustrating. I normally start off losing a lot of weight in the beginning, and then I get to a point where I am neither adding nor shedding pounds, which is when the disappointment sets in. I start to feel I am not doing the right things, but when I remember how hard I have worked, and the nights of thighs, arms, knees and side pains that i had to experience, I realize it would be unwise to give up, and I don't, and slowly but surely I start losing pounds again. Patience is a massive part of weight loss, and if you are not willing to endure, till you win, you will be faced with a long road of starts and stops, and might end up giving up. Think about it.

image: shutterstock

image: shutterstock

Can you Handle Spectators?

Believe it or not, the moment you commence a weight loss journey, you are going to gain an audience, which builds up as you lose weight. Have you ever experienced a time during a weight loss journey, when you get comments like “Please stop, you are losing too much weight?” Typically during your weight loss journey, you are bound to receive many comments, but you have to make up your mind that no matter the number of positive or negative comments you receive, you have a goal to achieve and that's your focus.

Once you achieve your goals, are you ready for the changes, and can you handle them?

plus size.jpg

Apart from gaining confidence, feeling healthier, fitting into clothes half your size, not being called 'FAT', and having `half the guys you had crushes on finally noticing you, weight loss tends to expose issues, than triumphs for people who cannot handle the changes , especially the emotionally issues which can include:

  • The attention being overwhelming
  • You become vulnerable and live life worrying about the implications of adding back the weight. This can lead to an obsession to keep your weight in check.
  • You may end up being self-absorbed, confidence can go as far as cocky
  • Some may even alienate those who loved them the weight loss.
  • It may even cause you to act unkindly to people who were not as nice to you when you were bigger.

And finally,

Do you love yourself?

Weight loss can change your life, it could even help in adding years to it, but it will not change you. Weight loss will not make a wicked person, kind, it will not make an insecure person, secure, it will not destroy any ‘bad luggage’ in your life, or the personal battles you may face. So if you succeed or are succeeding as you read this article, it is important to know that loving yourself is a verb that you must have lived by long before undertaking your weight loss journey. 

All these thinking tasks are just the beginning, there is the work, and the diet, and so much more.

Being a plus size, has taught me to appreciate people more, be less judgmental, and love everyone for who they are, I truly hope this article helped in more ways than one.

 

Cheers!

 

In case you missed The Weight Mind Workout Part 1, you can catch up using this link:

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Your Promise - Living & Loving with Jerome Yaovi Onipede

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU KEEP YOUR PROMISE?

Do I fail to keep my promises? Well sometimes, but not all the time, and whenever I don’t keep a promise, it never leaves my mind, because I know someone, somewhere is depending on working with the promise I made. You will be surprised though how so many people reading this now, and others out there too, are actually waiting, and depending on a promise someone made to them.

Some have to discontinue a process/course, because continuity for them depends on a promise kept. Others are assured that everything will turn out right just because they trust us in keeping the promise we made. So you are important to someone right now, and the promise you made is also very important.

Image: gaia adage

Image: gaia adage

Are you aware that so many lives are ruined everyday just because someone made a promise, and was unable or refused to keep it? Maybe we need to know at this point that so many people that we make promises to don’t have a plan B, and when we don’t keep our promise to them, they are thrown into confusion, panic or chaos. Take for example when you take your Marriage vows at the Altar, you are actually making a promise, or a set of promises. Most reasonable spouses are never looking at whom or where to go back to if the marriage doesn’t work, because deep down in their minds, they believe, 'THIS IS IT!' And that’s why you may have seen during the taking of the marriage vows, both or one of the people making this vow have tears in their eyes, because they cherish that moment, and believe every single promise made to them at that time, and look forward to its fulfillment.

Image: brand-quarterly-veseycreative

Image: brand-quarterly-veseycreative

Do you know that when promises are kept, living and loving becomes much easier, and life becomes a joy, because there is a constant flow of goodness, rather than evil? Think about it, and you will realize that everything about life is based on a promise; promise of a better tomorrow, promise that the newly wedded couple will live happily ever after, promise that our new born child will always be a joy to us even when he or she becomes an adult, promise that the next election will give us better leaders to govern us, promise that employers will pay their employees the right wages and at the right time, promise that everything God has said to us will come to pass, promise that there is a better life awaiting us after death, etc. So you see, our lives revolve around a promise or promises, and imagine how fulfilling our lives can be when these promises are kept.

Image: raindropsandwellingtons

Image: raindropsandwellingtons

Are there promises that people have made to you, but could not keep? How much did it really affect you? Do you still suffer from the aftermath of such? If you have not been able to move forward with your life after that, I suggest you consult a professional that can help you move forward, because so many beautiful moments are still ahead of you. And if you, like me have made promises to people, and have sometimes not been able to keep them, and its affecting you emotionally, then may I suggest you buckle up, and make a decision to do so no matter what it may cost you, because the more we delay keeping a promise, the harder it becomes to fulfill. However it may help you to eventually do so when you focus on how grateful the other person may be for keeping your promise to them. Don’t forget that keeping your promise to others can define or redefine their lives. You never know how far keeping your promise to just one person, can affect a whole community. Most importantly though, always remember that keeping your promise will also bring you to a place of rest, and you can be free from guilt. The promises we keep today, can open doors where we least expect it tomorrow.

Image: lauriecalzada

Image: lauriecalzada

 Jerome Yaovi Onipede is a Personal Counselor, Relationship Coach & Matchmaker 

 

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A Gift for the Billionaire - Executive Stress Clinic - Dr. Yomi Garnett

I recall my encounter, with Sir Louis Cladwell III; the billionaire business man had invited me to his home for a 24-hour intensive personal coaching on stress management. He was going to be 58, and was planning a small, discreet dinner party for few friends and business associates.

“I’d be greatly honored if you would attend,” he said.

“Sir, I’d be honored to be your guest,” I said

“My aircraft will be at the Airport, 10 am on Saturday. Would you join a few other guests on that flight?” He said.

“That would be splendid, Sir, see you on Saturday,” I said.

I had a dilemma; what birthday gift would I give my eminent client? When a man is that wealthy, what could one possibly give him that would excite him? I agonized over this for two days until I had a sudden flash of insight. I knew just the thing. I relaxed.

Image: chatelaine

Image: chatelaine

The massive and stately ballroom was alive with laughter and sophisticated banter. It was a motley crowd of men and women of political and economic power and clout, while a few distinguished and internationally acclaimed personalities injected a different flavor to the already classy evening set up.

Sometime during the party, the celebrant got up to speak. Turning to me, he said, “Doctor, the people gathered here are very close friends of mine. Like me, certainly until I met you, the seemingly happy fronts they present are a mere façade covering their lives of quiet desperation. Please, in a few short sentences, give them a message of hope. Tell them how they can cope with the stress that is incident to their day-to-day living. What stress relieving formula can you teach these good people?”

I was thrown entirely off-balance. I hardly expected this. I certainly came quite unprepared for even the shortest presentation. But then, all eyes were on me. And then, the idea hit me like a bolt of lightning.

I would kill two birds with one stone. I would present my gift, and then tell the story behind the gift, for the benefit of his guests.

I began…

“2,500 years ago, there lived a great Emperor of China. His name was Liu Bang Chew. He ruled over an empire that spread across most of what is now Asia extending into Northern Europe. He had ruled for 40 years, and was about to celebrate his 60th Birthday anniversary. It was supposed to be a great event and preparations for it commenced a whole year before the event. The gifts and presents started rolling in. Governors of the provinces, noblemen, merchants, peasants and farmers brought in thousands of horses, camels and big bales of raw silk, cotton, spices, perfumes and food. Their quantities were so vast, so enormous that the Prime Minister had to designate and empty a whole city to accommodate the gifts. The Emperor, however, was not impressed with the gifts. They were all, in his Imperial perception, too common place. One bright sunny day, a simple peasant arrived the city gates of Peking. He was dressed in a simple, white robe and strap sandals. He had traveled on foot for 6 months from the far northern reaches of the Empire. At the gates of the palace, he demanded to see the Emperor. After persisting at the gate for a whole month, he was finally granted entry into the palace. He was taken to the Imperial court, where the Emperor was seated on his throne, surrounded by the Empress, Princes, Prime Minister and about 200 courtiers and noble men. He fell flat in prostration before the monarch.

“O great Emperor, I bring you birthday felicitations and a gift.”

“Your gift had better be an improvement of what I’ve already received or else I shall decree that your head be separated from the rest of your body,” the Emperor replied gravely.

At this, the peasant, whose name was Chouli, reached into his robe and brought out a simple bronze bracelet, which he handed over to the Emperor. The Emperor gazed at it intently in amazement. He turned it over in his hands, thinking to himself, “what foolishness is this?”. On closer inspection, he saw there was an inscription on the bracelet. It read “THIS TOO SHALL PASS”. He passed it round to his Empress and the noblemen, who read the inscription also.

Image: seantrank

Image: seantrank

Finally, he said “Peasant, what sort of reject-able gift is this?” Chouli looked at the emperor and said “O great Emperor, it is as it says on the bracelet, which I want you to wear from now until your last day.

Everything shall pass.

Your days as Emperor shall pass. Your difficulties, your times of joy, they shall all pass.

No matter what harrowing, terrible experience you may have, it shall pass.

There is always light at the end of a dark tunnel.

No matter the pleasurable experience you may have, it shall pass. Allow this profound statement to be a consoling factor in every facet of your life. This will allow you to laugh at your world.

It will allow you laugh at yourself and at your petty misgivings and errors.

You will know that nothing is of any real importance and that circumstances can have only the importance you choose to attach to them.

You will gradually get to know the magic of life;

 that everything always works out for the best.

Nothing lasts forever.

You are greater than your failures, and even your successes; sad today, happy tomorrow, and happy today, sad tomorrow…It will pass.

The only thing that will not pass is: The eternal presence of the Almighty and the perfection of your creation”.

The Emperor rose from his throne, pulled Chouli to his feet and embraced him warmly. He turned to his noblemen and said “Surely, this is the wisest man in all of CHINA.

Later that afternoon, Chouli was appointed GRAND COUNSELLOR OF ALL CHINA. And so, that was how a lowly peasant farmer found himself the 3rd most important dignitary in China.

I paused and turned to the celebrant, bringing out a silver bracelet from my pocket.

“Sir, while wishing you a very happy birthday, may I humbly present to you this bracelet with the same inscription, ‘This Too Shall Pass’. Anytime you look at it, the transience of all trial, all Joy, all physical existence, will accord you the privilege of living a more tranquil life. Have a stress-free rest of your life.”

...the room became lit with applause and smiles, as though burdens were being lifted!

 

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Depression, The Invisible Disease - Dr. Shabihul Hassan

When discussing depression as a symptom, a feeling of hopelessness is the most often described sensation. Depression is a common problem in the modern world, and a growing cause of concern for health agencies worldwide, due to the high social and economic costs involved.

Symptoms of depression, like the disorder itself, vary in degree of severity, and contribute from mild to severe mood disturbances. Mood disturbances may range from a sudden transitory decrease in motivation and concentration to gloomy moods and irritation, or to severe, chronic prostration.                                                                                

Depression has been part of the human condition since antiquity. Hippocrates, the ancient Greek "Father of Medicine," is generally credited with the first description of an emotional disorder and is thought to have coined the term "melancholia,”                                                                                             Although life is filled with unexpected events such as the death of a loved one, loss of a job, major illness, or other catastrophic events, not everybody becomes depressed. Most individuals suffer only temporary feelings of depression and find ways to adjust to life's challenges. However, there are certain individuals who experience a major depressive episode when faced by stressful situations. Most individuals with depression have difficulty in dealing with the challenges of daily life, and even minor obstacles or difficulties may trigger exaggerated emotional responses. Frustrating situations are frequently met with feelings of despair, dejection, resentment, and worthlessness, with people easily desisting from their goals.

image: weforum

image: weforum

People with depression may try to avoid social situations and interpersonal interactions. Some people with depression overeat, while others show a sharp loss of appetite (anorexia).                                                                       Symptoms of depression include at least five of the following changes in the individual's previous characteristics:

  • Loss of motivation and inability to feel pleasure
  • Deep chronic sadness or distress 
  • Changes in sleep patterns 
  • Lack of physical energy (apathy)
  • Feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness
  • Difficulty with concentration
  • Overeating or loss of appetite
  • Withdrawal from interpersonal interactions or avoidance of others; death wishes, or belief in his/her own premature death.
Image: media.self.com

Image: media.self.com

In children, the first signs of depression may be irritation and loss of concentration, apathy and distractibility during classes, and social withdrawal.

Some adults initially complain of constant fatigue, even after long hours of sleep, digestive disorders, headaches, anxiety, recurrent memory lapses, and insomnia or excessive sleeping.

An episode of major depression may be preceded by a period of dysthymia, a mild but persistent low mood state, usually accompanied by diminished sexual drive, decreased affective response, and loss of interest in normal social activities and hobbies. Depression can mimic the symptoms of many diseases, and physical symptoms may include severe headaches, muscle aches, stomach aches. and even fever.

With treatment, more than 80% of people with depression respond favourably to medications, and the feeling of hopelessness subsides; they are able to resume their normal work and social activities.                                              

Depression may occur at almost any stage of life, from childhood to middle or old age, as a result of a number of different factors that lead to chemical changes in the brain. Traumatic experiences, chronic stress, emotional loss, dysfunctional interpersonal relationships, social isolation, biological changes, aging, and inherited predisposition are common triggers for the symptoms of depression. Depression is classified according to the symptoms displayed and patterns of occurrence. Types of depression include major depressive disorder, bipolar depressive disorder, psychotic depressive disorder, postpartum depression, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and seasonal disorder. Additional types of depression are included under the label of atypical depressive disorder. Many symptoms overlap among the types of depression, and not all people with depression experience all the symptoms associated with their particular type of the disorder.  

Depression has been classified as a mood disorder or 'affective' disorder. Mood is defined as a powerful, sustained emotion that, in the extreme, markedly affects a person's perception of the world and ability to adequately function in society.                                                                                                             Mood disorders, depression, and anxiety are common illnesses in our society. Lost work time, family conflicts, personal strife, and other consequences of the disease can eventually lead to complete disruption of one's life.

Image: der-postillon

Image: der-postillon

Depression and mood disorders have become increasingly recognized as widespread health problems. In spite of this they are often under-diagnosed and under-treated because of the stigma associated with them.                                                                                                                    Some people are genetically predisposed to react more strongly than others to life's inevitable blows. Scientists have traced this susceptibility in part to how the body processes a neural messenger called serotonin, which is linked to mood, and helps cells learn and communicate.                                                                                             Serotonin is the 'feel good' neurotransmitter of the brain.  It is responsible for us feeling happy, relaxed, and calm, motivated, and at peace with our lives and our role in the world. People suffering from depression invariably have low levels of serotonin.                                                                                                               Investigators have also explored the role of the hippocampus, an area deep in the brain critical to memory formation, in severe depression, and they have used brain imaging to try to pinpoint areas in the brain that flare up or go quiet when people are suffering from spasms of despair.                                                                                                              It is possible that activity in a part of the brain known as the Brodman area 25 may be associated with the experience of despair.                                                                     

The incidence of depression is higher in certain families, indicating that a biological vulnerability can be inherited. However, not everybody with a genetic vulnerability develops the illness.                                                                                               Psychological makeup plays an important role in vulnerability to depression. People who have low self-esteem, and are readily overwhelmed by stress are prone to depression.                                                                                                                        

A serious loss, chronic illness, difficult relationship, financial problem, or any unwelcome change in life patterns can also trigger a depressive episode. Very often, a combination of genetic, psychological, and environmental factors is involved in the onset of a depressive illness.

People with negative thinking patterns, who are pessimistic, have low self-esteem, worry too much or feel they have little control over life's events are also more likely to develop clinical depression.                                                                 

Childhood experiences are the colours with which the adult draws his or her pictures of life. Adverse childhood experience such as persistent criticism by parents, rigid goal-setting in Childhood, fear of failure, parental conflicts are common and destructive. These can all become the seeds for depression in adult life.                                                                                                               An interesting but troublesome set of expectations many of us form as children concerns 'happiness'.  We must learn and teach our children that continued bliss is not an attainable goal for anyone, and instead aim at the best that one can realistically expect from life as a human being.                                                                                                                   

We must learn that fear of failure is the greatest cause of failure in the world. It is also one of the major causes of depression.                          

 The diagnosis of depression is clinical based on the experience of the physician, the presence of symptoms and the elimination of physical causes.     

 Depression is not simply 'all in the head'.It has physical causes, linked to abnormalities in brain chemistry. However unlike other illnesses the diagnosis can not yet be confirmed through one diagnostic test, and only when we can finally diagnose it by means of an abnormal blood test or something similar will those who suffer from depression be given the same degree of acceptance as those who have 'acceptable' problems such as angina and diabetes.                               

Depression can be treated successfully. However, people tend to react differently to the available treatments. For example, one medication may be effective and well tolerated in one person but not another. Choosing the right treatment is an individual process, that will depend not only on the severity and the type of depression, but also on the person's circumstances, and his or her preferences and the doctor's recommendation.                                       

The best treatment is a combination of positive thinking, positive talking, and antidepressants.  Antidepressants (also called mood elevators), can improve mood, sleep, appetite, and concentration. However, they can take from 6 to 12 weeks before real signs of improvement are experienced. It is important to keep on taking your medication or discuss it with your doctor.                                                   Common antidepressants are amitryptaline and Imipramine. All antidepressants work by altering the effects of important brain chemicals, called neurotransmitters. The neurons use the neurotransmitters to communicate with each other. The neurotransmitters that play the most significant part in the treatment of depression are serotonin and noradrenalin.  

Depression is a real condition and it can be treated. It is not a sign of weakness. It's your body's way of telling you that you may need help. The good news is, you don't have to live with depression. If you think you are depressed, talk to your doctor about getting treatment.

Image: renewingthoughts

Image: renewingthoughts

An attitude of contentment is the foundation of positive thinking. Contentment unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Contentment makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. Learn to be contented and you may never be depressed.

Dr. Shabihul Hassan

Chief Medical Director 

Dr. Hassan's Hospital & Diagnostic Centre

Maitama. Abuja

Dotcom Kids - The Possible Dangers

THE REIGN OF TECHNOLOGY

We are clearly blessed to be in a generation where technology is thriving and highly depended upon; technology has been a massive help, in the areas of increasing globalization, development, communication, convenience, entertainment and business. It has given us the internet, Wi-Fi, movie/music streaming, cashless money, e-markets, countless apps, name it. It has become a big part of our day to day living; an aspect many of us cannot do without. It definitely has a fair share of advantages, but a deeper look at its effect particularly on our young ones today, is both scary and terrifying.

Image: theconversation

Image: theconversation

The children of this generation, who I fondly refer to as ‘the dotcom’ generation, if not appropriately guided, are faced with numerous dangers and exposure to a world of information unfit for them. 

When parents fail to guide their children/wards, they will be raised the internet, apps, video games, and television. The Street Hawker is passionate about the development and safety of children, and we urge parents and guardians to pay attention to the activities of the children in their care.

Let’s look at the harmful effects of Technology on our young ones.

Online or Cyber Bullying/Stalking

Imagine your child had a brawl at the mall with his friend; that’s already bad enough, he then gets home, logs on to snapchat and the episode with his friend is right there on video, with nasty comments attacking him. It’s gone viral! “They don’t even know my version of events or even the truth about what happened”, he says to himself.

Oh! Poor thing! He curls up. He is sad. Maybe depressed!

It is worse when the bully can stalk him/her using location services and tracking features on many apps. It's absurd when your friends can tell exactly where you are, and  when you are eating, sleeping or performing other activities (if you don't know that you can switch to 'ghost' mode), such as snapchat has included in its recent update. 

Image: elvanec

Image: elvanec

According to dosomething.org, cyber bullying causes 2 out of 9 children to commit suicide. 58% of children have been told something mean online; 81% of them say that it is easier to bully online than in person. However, the most heart-breaking statistic is the fact that only 1 out of 10 children will tell their parents of their abuse.

With these statistics, parents have to accept the unpleasant truth; “if your child is not bullied, there are chances they are the bully or part of the bullies.”

Social Isolation / Lack of Social skills

Let’s face it, nothing beats meeting a person, face to face, reading their body language, seeing their expressions, experiencing friendship, comfort, encouragement, laughter, and enjoying what you have in common with them.

Children, today, tend to end up being socially awkward, living life through an avatar, virtual reality, online friends, and chatting all day with supposed friends they don’t know, and have never met.  Most children cannot account for a handful of close friends they share real life experiences with.

Image: mybilliondollarapp

Image: mybilliondollarapp

In a thesis by the University of Rhode Island Honours, children like these tend to experience a deep feeling of alienation, loneliness and depression.

Catherine Steiner-Adair, a Harvard-affiliated clinical psychologist indicated that children who are addicted to technology can gain the ability to multitask, but will lack the ability to engage in criticaland deep thinking, which are needed in the real world.
According to 2012 Pew Research Centre Study, most children send 3464 text messages a month in the United States, excluding ‘snaps’ Instagram, WhatsApp and so on.

These days, children don’t care much about bonding with their parents and siblings, they simply cannot wait to chat with their friends after school.

Imagine a room of quiet people, heads down with white screens glowing on their faces.

When children are quiet and indoors, we may think they are safe, but we should be concerned when they are online. Children chat, seek advice and emotional security from strangers and groups in some other continent, while we may be in the next room.

Image: Newyork Times

Image: Newyork Times

Obesity and Other Health issues

In the Dotcom generation we get to see a gradual reduction of physical activities amongst children, which can lead to health issues.

Image: lardbucket

Image: lardbucket

 There are other concerns like Lack of sleep from long hours of video games, eyesight and hearing problems from peering at the screen for long hours, loud music from earphones, neck and head pains, and obesity.  Children are not as active physically when they are stuck to the computer, television, mobile devices, Xbox, Netflix, PS4, Virtual games, while nibbling snacks and sweets. Who wants to play good old ‘Ten Ten’ or football, when there is FIFA 2017.  No activity, slower metabolism, no burning calories, no keeping fit.

Image: sciencenewsforstudents

Image: sciencenewsforstudents

ARE YOU CONCERNED YET?

I am not a parent and I am scared, but this article is not just for parents, it is also for Teachers, Counsellors, Aunties, Uncles, Senior Brothers and Sisters, and Guardians.

Let’s face it, this is indeed a problem. Why would you give an 8 year old and IPhone 7?  Hilarious!  I know! But it is happening, what do you think he will be doing with it? Our kids are facing imminent danger in a scary way. Parents need to be involved, concerned mature citizens should be more involved.

Technology is great, it has come to stay and it will only evolve. However, we must make it work positively in the lives of our children.

We shall later look at what can be done to protect our children, and provide awareness for them. The children need to understand these dangers and get involved in protecting themselves.

 Till then, let’s have your comments on other possible dangers technology can pose to our young ones in the comments box below.

Thank you to everyone who has subscribed and has taken time to read my articles on The Street Hawker app.

This is Faith Nte for The Street Hawker and this is my Impression

 

 

  

 

 

 

The Weight Loss Mind Work Out

Good day People,

So… we now live in a time, when everyone is so health conscious, calorie conscious, fitness conscious, and so on; how conscious do you want to be, believe me it is happening. Every day we see countless, praises and hailing of many individuals who have lost from 50kg to even hundred kilograms of body weight and talk about how amazing their lives are. These are amazing feats, and very motivating, who can forget 'Teyana Taylor Dance' in Kanye West's 'Fade video,' which was premiered in the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards? I had dreams of me in a crop top. That body looked so sculpted, it snatched weaves, literally. With all these in your face...you are obligated to lose weight.

Chioma Omeruah, Chigul, Singer, Actress, Comedian 

Chioma Omeruah, Chigul, Singer, Actress, Comedian 

Great, it is a step and a journey, but this journey starts from your mind.

Losing weight does not just include a change in of your physical outlook but a change of lifestyle, it is a journey that requires consistency, discipline, patience and hard work, but little light is put on the mental tasks you have to undergo to begin the journey. Did you think about it before you began?

So, here are some questions that will make you sit and think before you decide to change your life.

DO YOU WANT TO LOSE WEIGHT?

As crazy as this question seems, it remains one of the most important questions ever. A lot of people say they want to lose weight; well their actions say otherwise, I have been a plus size kind of girl for almost half my life, and a proud foodie, I grew up not having many choices where delicacies were concerned, so when things got better, I ate every 'freaking' delicious thing that came my way, and losing weight was the last thing on my mind; I did not care. Let us face it not everyone wants to lose weight, and there is no judgement here.

WHY DO YOU WANT TO LOSE WEIGHT?

I cannot emphasize the importance of this question, because it determines how long you will go and how far you will go in your weight loss journey. Please never ever lose weight to impress or please anyone.

Being the big girl was not fun, you had everyone, turning to a weight watcher, health analyst and critic on your case, and it could cause you to get into depression, lack of self-confidence, lack of self-worth, and all of a sudden you want to please everybody...I did that, and later decided to start working on my weight to please someone I loved. 

Chigul

Chigul

After two months, instead of me getting encouraged I got a whole lot of criticisms on how I was not losing enough pounds, fast enough. That stung! I went back to food, and packed on more pounds! 

Weight loss is a PERSONAL Journey...it is for you; your benefit and your happiness. You go to the gym because you want to look sexy for you.

YOU! YOU!! YOU!!! Be selfish about it.

I speak from experience, so believe me, I am giving you knowledge from a place I understand. So, for more mental tasks questions to ask before you lose weight? Check on The Street Hawker; get app on Play store for android and Apple Store for IOS devices for the continuation on THE WEIGHT LOSS MIND WORKOUT.

This is my experience. Would you share yours?

If you won the weight loss battle of the mind? Let us know how? Please comment in the box below.

Have a lovely day.

 

This is Faith Nte for The Street Hawker and this is my impression

 

The Story of The World’s Most Travelled Man

“This is a story that I find fascinating; it is the height of combining luxury, adventure, and work.

Enjoy it like I did” – Toyin W. Oke

The McLaren F1 and the Concorde. Photo: lounge buddy

The McLaren F1 and the Concorde. Photo: lounge buddy

Fred Finn is the world’s most travelled man. Since his first flight across the Atlantic in 1958, Fred has flown north of 15 million miles and has visited 150 different countries. In 1983, he was certified by the Guinness Book of World Records for having flown more air miles than any other passenger in history.

The Concorde, which flew from 1976 to 2003, was the world’s first and only commercial supersonic aircraft, and flying on it was a one-of-a-kind experience that remains unsurpassed to this day. Fred has flown on the Concorde a record-breaking 718 times, including the first and final flights.

Recently, we had the tremendous pleasure of speaking with him to learn more about his travels over the years, his experiences flying on the Concorde, and some of the valuable insights he has learned from over half a century of air travel.

Q: AS THE PERSON WHO’S FLOWN ON THE CONCORDE MORE TIMES THAN ANYONE ELSE, WHAT PART OF THE EXPERIENCE DID YOU ENJOY MOST?

A: My favorite part, was all of it. The Concorde was the most amazing and most beautiful airplane ever built, and it still is. When I first travelled on it, I thought it was amazing. I flew out of Dulles in Washington DC. At Washington, the plane didn’t come to the gate - they didn’t have gates. Instead, you went into a boarding lounge, and the lounge goes down, drives down to the plane, and comes up again. And when I boarded the plane, I saw this sleek, beautiful, gorgeous airplane, and it looked out of this world. It was very long and very slim - of course, it had to be in order to go that fast.

The Concorde is very different from a normal aircraft, because you’re going to be flying faster than the speed of a rifle bullet, 23 miles a minute, and you’re going to be flying at 60,000 feet. There’s nothing close to this. The takeoff is a lot quicker than a subsonic airplane, at about 250 miles per hour. When we used to leave from New York, we would cruise out to the end of Long Island, almost to Boston, and then it goes supersonic. They would put the reheats on to give it the ability to fly supersonic, and they would keep it on until it got to Mach 1.71. Once the Concorde is traveling faster than the speed of sound, it creates a loud noise called a sonic boom.

The Concorde would fly at 1,350 miles an hour, and they would serve champagne, Dom Perignon, to 100 people with lunch or dinner. The average time it took to cross the Atlantic on the Concorde was 3.5 hours. For comparison, my first flight across the Atlantic took 18 hours and four stops in London, Prestwick, Keflavik, and Bangor, Maine before landing in Idlewild, now called Kennedy Airport (JFK). On the Concorde, the fastest crossing we ever did took 2 hours and 59 minutes. The normal crossing from London to New York is about 6 hours one way and 8 hours the other, depending on the jet stream.

The Concorde is the only aircraft in the world where you can leave London in the winter on a cold winter’s night, and it’d be dark, and it starts to get light again when you go west. The Concorde goes faster than the turning of the earth, so you fly west and the sun comes up. And you land in New York in sunshine on the same day, an hour before you took off, so it’s still light. It’s the only aircraft that could do that, and it’s quite amazing. They used to sell my regular seat (9A) sometimes, so they’d ask me to sit in the cockpit. I’d put my headset on and tune in, and I actually spoke to the aircraft coming in the other way.

Once, this aircraft was closing in, an SR1 Blackbird. It was the fastest airplane, flying at almost Mach 3, and they couldn’t believe that there was another aircraft at their height. It was them in the Blackbird with all these masks on and all this heavy gear, and there’s the Concorde flying by with 100 people, saying cheers as they drink their champagne. No other aircraft could do that, so that’s the experience of Concorde. You would also have the opportunity to meet people that you would never, hardly meet otherwise.

Photo: Livingstone's Travel World

Photo: Livingstone's Travel World

Q: WHO ARE SOME OF THE FAMOUS CELEBRITIES THAT YOU’VE TRAVELED WITH ON THE CONCORDE?

A: I’ve flown with countless celebrities and famous persons over the years. Once you’re on that Concorde, everybody’s equal. If you try to reach the heads of film studios on the ground, you’d have walls and walls of people to get through. Try and say hello to Paul McCartney on the ground, and you’d have a job. But once you get on that airplane, it’s “Hello, how are you doing?”

I flew many times with Paul McCartney - he used to draw happy faces and hand them out to everybody. I flew with The Who, Led Zeppelin, I flew with heads of businesses. I flew with Ricky Nelson, Joan Collins, Joan Rivers. I flew with Superwoman, and we took her to the pub and had a pint afterwards.

Do you remember John Denver? I was on a flight with him on Christmas Day from Paris to New York, and there were three of us, so he got out his guitar and played “Country Roads” for us, and that was one of my favorite songs.

I met the guy that managed the Beatles and the guy that managed the Bee Gees. I flew with Bruce Springsteen, got along very well with him, and he used to get off the plane and ask the BA guy “How many flights has Fred done now?” This is what we used to do. Muhammad Ali, I flew with, Floyd Patterson. Golfers in the Ryder Cup from England, they used to fly on Concorde, so I met the golfers. It was quite amazing. I flew with Presidents, Presidents’ wives, and ex-Presidents.

Q: WHAT WERE SOME OF YOUR MOST MEMORABLE EXPERIENCES IN THE AIR?

A: Of course, you always remember your first flight. I used to live near an airfield, and as a kid riding on my bike, I would pester these guys to give me a flight. They took me into their airplane one day and turned me upside down, and all I had on was a seatbelt, 4,000 feet in the air. I flew my first commercial flight in 1958 from an airport in London, and we landed in Scotland, Iceland, Maine, and then Idlewild (now Kennedy), and I remember those flights clearly like it was yesterday.

One time, I did three crossings on the Concorde in a day, which was the most that anyone has done. It’s impossible to do now. A company that I worked for at the time wanted a contract signed, and they wanted it done that day, so that’s what I did. And you couldn’t have done it otherwise. I flew from London to New York and landed two hours before the New York-London flight, so I caught that one and then I got into London in time before coming back to catch the Concorde back to New York.

On the Concorde, I used to take bottles of cognac and champagne for the crew, and they used to do the same for me. It was like a very small family on the Concorde - everyone knew each other that flew on the aircraft, and I knew all the crew. I used to make cocktails for the passengers when they were busy. In many cases, I became a part of the crew.

Every flight on the Concorde was amazing.

I had a love affair with this aircraft for 27 years.

It was love at first flight - it’s unbelievable.

Q: AS SOMEONE WHO’S FLOWN MORE THAN HIS FAIR SHARE OVER THE YEARS, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON JET LAG? 

A: I don’t believe in jet lag at all - there is no such thing as jet lag.

It’s about dehydration, stress, and being tired. If you take an average flight, 11 hours from San Francisco to London, for example, it’s not actually 11 hours.

You’ve got to check in 2 hours ahead, you have to get through security, and then you’ve got to wait for your flight. You’re already tired, and you’ve got to get on your flight inside a steel aluminum tube, and the air for the cabin is coming through the engine, so it’s dry. So you get exhausted.

Once you get to your destination, you’ve got to go through immigration and go find your hotel or get back home, and so you’ve had a very long day. People do not spray water on their bare skin when flying, which is the best thing to do because of dehydration from the dry air. Every 20 or 30 minutes when you’re flying, you should close your eyes for a few minutes to give your eyes some time to moisturize.

People tell me that I talk a lot of nonsense, but you know what? When you fly on Concorde, you go through the same time changes, in 3 and a half hours, and there was no jet lag at all. I used to fly from London to New York, go to work all day, and sometimes fly back overnight. Recently, I did the inaugural Boeing Dreamliner flight from London to Atlanta with Richard Branson. This was a beautiful airplane, and the cabin pressure was lower. It’s not hot - it’s actually quite humid, so you don’t get as tired, because your skin is not dry now. Jet lag is really about dehydration, tiredness, and stress. You can feel it when your eyes are dry and heavy, so I take a little water spray with me and it makes an awful lot of difference. But I’ve never had jet lag in my life, and I’ve flown across the Atlantic over 2000 times.

 

Q: TELL ME ABOUT YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH RICHARD BRANSON AND YOUR INVOLVEMENT WITH THE CREATION OF VIRGIN ATLANTIC AIRWAYS.

A: Well, I came off the Concorde one night in New York, and I caught the helicopter over to Newark. This guy came up to me in Newark and said “You’re Fred Finn”, and I said “Yes.”

He said “Richard Branson would like to have a lunch with you”.

I said “Well, that’s fine, I’ll be back in London in 3 to 4 days’ time”.

He said “It’s tomorrow”.

I said “When did you know about this?”

He said “We knew this morning that you’d be coming here this evening”.

I said “Well, I was in London 4 hours ago, I just came on Concorde, and if you had told me in London, I would have stayed there”.

He said “Well, we’ve just got this flight, we’ve got a seat on it for you”, so instead of going home, I got on another flight and flew back to London.

I met Richard in London on a little boat in the river, a houseboat. I spent 3 hours with him talking about what he wanted to do with this airline (Virgin Atlantic) and what I could do to help him, so I did.

I helped him with my idea about the limousine and the Upper Class.

At that time, companies were cutting back on first class travel.

Upper Class would do a lot more than many first class seats did - we provided a limousine for each guest, put a masseuse onboard, put a bar onboard, and it was a fun way to fly.

The passengers loved it, and the bean counters loved it as well, since they were paying for business class rather than a first class ticket. Everybody was happy.

I did many things with Richard. I used to fly with the Red Arrows, which is our Royal Air Force Acrobatic Team. I took Richard with me to fly with the Red Arrows. I took him and his wife and 2 children to Kenya on one of my safaris.

I got him his first mobile phone. When the first mobile phone company started here, it was called Cellnet, and I could give phones out to my friends, because they wanted famous people, celebrities using their phones. So I gave him a phone and every week, his assistant would call up and say that he’s lost his phone.

Do you remember the first phones? They were like a house brick back then. He kept losing it or he’d call me on it.

The chairman of the company and I had very similar numbers, and Richard would misdial every time.

I played cricket with him in America along with Pamela Anderson and the Los Angeles Lakers in a place in Santa Monica.

Recently, I went on the inaugural Dreamliner flight to Atlanta last year with him, and we had a band onboard, the first ever band onboard streaming back to earth. So yes, I’ve gotten to know Richard quite well over the years, and we still keep in touch regularly.

Photo: Livingstone's Travel World

Photo: Livingstone's Travel World

 Q: HAVING FLOWN FOR ALMOST 60 YEARS, WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT CHANGES YOU’VE SEEN IN AIR TRAVEL OVER THAT TIME PERIOD?

A: The biggest change of all is the jet engine. First off, in England, you would not have Kenyan coffee beans, bananas, tomatoes from Spain, and people wouldn’t be able to enjoy the variety of foods that they do nowadays.

The jet engine is the biggest development in the world, and it’s not just about travel - take horse racing, for example - they ship horses across the world, which they wouldn’t be able to do otherwise. Passenger travel, freight, DHL couriers, UPS, all of these things exist and have been enhanced because of the jet engine.

These days, planes have also gotten bigger, and they’ve got flat seats, beds, and private apartments. I was on Etihad (The Residence), where you got a private suite, a little lounge, and you could walk to your very own shower and bathroom.

They’ve got a butler there, and he’ll make sure that all your clothes are pressed and that you’re well taken care of.

As for something that’s gone down over the years, when I started flying, I used to fly a lot with Pan American. In this day, it was the best carrier in the world.

They were the first with the 707 and 747, and the 747 had an upstairs with a restaurant. There were 2 tables for 2 and 2 tables for 4, and they used to come to your seat and give you the menu. They used to say “Mr. Finn, your table’s ready”, and I head upstairs, and they’d have roast beef, roast lamb, fresh salmon, whatever you want, really.

It was cooked onboard, and they carved it at your table like they do in a restaurant. So on an 8hour trip, it was sitting upstairs - starters, main course, dessert, cheese, wines, and cognac.

Those days, you could have a cigarette or a cigar afterwards if you wanted to. It was a very enjoyable thing and it took 4 hours out of your trip. It was like being on a private airplane because there were only twelve people up there.

The older days of flying provided an unbelievably good value. Lounges have changed a lot and have become a commercial proposition nowadays. In 1974, United came out with the 100,000 Mile Club, and I had already done a million.

I was the first million-miler on United. The lounges didn’t have signs advertising their location. When you checked in, they said “Sir, door down there, it’s open”, and there was your bar and everything, and the cabin service director of the flight would come to the lounge, offer to take my briefcase, and escort me to the plane. This doesn’t happen anymore.

A lot of this exclusivity came to an end when the lounges started opening up for everyone who would pay for a membership. It’s become a very commercialized situation.

When deregulation came in America, it was good in some ways.

You had all the airlines that were part of the system, like Pan American, Braniff - a lot of them are gone now, but after deregulation, Braniff decided to increase their number of destinations significantly and upgrade their aircraft. Harding Lawrence ran the airline, and he was very good at all that.

They used to serve the best breakfast of any airline between Dallas and Chicago.

I lived in Nashville for a while and got used to American Airlines, Braniff, and Piedmont, which became a part of US Air and later American. But they just got too big.

All the old airlines had union contracts.

To work with Pan American as a flight attendant, you had to speak 2 languages and be a university graduate, and after deregulation, the standards became much lower for national carriers. Airlines like Pan American and Eastern Airlines couldn’t afford to keep up, they couldn’t afford new aircraft, and they couldn’t afford anything because running the airline prior to deregulation cost them too much, and people weren’t going to come to work for half the salary or a quarter of the salary.

A lot of the low cost carriers came in and the legacy carriers today are not what they used to be. At the moment, none of the American carriers fly the A380.

They can claim foul play by airlines like Emirates, but at the end of the day, look at the profits that they have made by providing limousine service, amenity kits, flat beds, suites that close up, fast track, and all the other luxuries they provide. It’s the same price you would pay as if you flew on United. The Gulf carriers (Qatar Airways, Emirates, and Etihad) are brilliant, as are Singapore Airlines and Oman Air. 

Q: WHAT ARE THE MOST INTERESTING PLACES THAT YOU’VE TRAVELED TO?

A: Over the years, I’ve been to 150 countries.

One of my favorites would be Kenya. I like safari, I lived in Kenya for a while, and it’s one of the most unique countries on Earth. I belong to a club called the Mt. Kenya Safari Club, which has nothing to do with safari but was founded by the film star William Holden and his wife, Stefanie Powers.

Their home was 6,000 feet up, and it was warm during the day, cool at night, and there were no mosquitoes or anything like that. You can drive by the star-light, you don’t need lights.

There’s a mountain called Mt. Kenya, and it’s 17,500 feet high sitting on the equator. There’s snow on it, and it’s one of the most amazing sights.

40 minutes from there, you’re at Nakuru.

Photo: daily mail

Photo: daily mail

Now, Lake Nakuru, when you fly around it, it looks like it’s got pink sludge around it. In fact, it’s pink flamingos, millions of them. Another 40 minutes from there is the Maasai Mara National Preserve, which joins the Serengeti as the largest free range safari in the world. I drove across the Maasai Mara and Serengeti, and it took 6 days.

They have the migration of the wildebeest, and you can see it from the moon. From space, you can see there’s these 2 million animals moving for months to graze.

Another place I like is the Seychelles, a group of islands in the Indian Ocean. Each one is different, but they have the best beaches on God’s earth. The islands are granitic, so you’ve got all these granitic shapes, and one of the islands, Praslin, has the coco de mer, the biggest coconut in the world. The seeds can weigh up to 10 kilos. They’ve also got the Seychelles tree frog, which is green, and of course, amazing culture.

I like Japan, I like England, and I love Ukraine.

Ukraine is a very diverse country. It’s the biggest country in Europe. It makes fantastic wine, and it’s got the most beautiful women on Earth. Ukraine’s background is very much different from that of Russia.

It came into the Ottoman Empire, Austro Hungarian Empire, and the Silk Road from way back when. It’s very beautiful there, and that’s why Ukrainian women are so beautiful.

And then, of course, there’s the little country of Georgia. It’s got the highest mountain in Europe there. Georgia’s the oldest winemaking country in the world, and it’s capital, Tbilisi, is very historic. They’ve been making wine there for four, five thousand years, and they’re still making it in these big claypots that they’ve put into the ground where the winery is. They put the grapes into the pots and seal them with beeswax. Then, they bury it into the earth to make the wine. The grapes there are called saperavi - these are black the whole way through, and when you get this wine, it’s actually almost black. The flavor, you’ve never tasted anything like it.

The food is renowned, and using the leftover grapes, they make a distilled drink called chacha - it’s very potent. The people are very friendly, the culture is very good, the dancing is a thing to behold, and then you can drive down to the other city, Batumi, which is like Monaco. It’s on the Black Sea, absolutely splendid, and it’s got all the big hotels there. It’s an amazing place.

I love America, of course. When I was living in America, the company that I worked for told me there’s an Oldsmobile Cutlass out there.

They put 400 dollars a week into my bank account, handed me a credit card, and asked me to drive around to every major city in the United States and show their product to every major food distributor in the country. I drove from New York to every city in the United States.

It took me 17 weeks to complete, and I had the time of my life, absolute time of my life. It was unbelievable.

 Q: WHAT ARE SOME OF THE THINGS THAT YOU ARE WORKING ON THESE DAYS?

A: This year is the 40th anniversary of the Concorde’s first flight. The London Mint is issuing a silver and gold medal to commemorate this anniversary, and I’ve been working with them on writing the presentation book.

The silver medal will contain a piece of Concorde metal, so everybody will be able to own a part of the Concorde.

The gold medal will have the Concorde flat with the Queen’s head on the back, and my presentation book will be launched with them.

People are loving that.

I had a guy call me and he said, “You know what, I’ve just done a trip on Concorde.” I said, “How did you do that?”, and he said “I just read what you wrote, it’s the best thing, and it takes you through the whole experience.” Later this year in October, I’ll be a speaker at a function in London to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Concorde, and there’s going to be 500 people coming to this dinner. My own book, Tail Finn, will be launched at that event in October.

I’ve also got a travel app called Quicket, and it does things that no other apps or travel products can do.

Now what does Quicket do? If I want to book a ticket, I’ll tap on the Quicket icon on my phone, which has a little jet engine and a tail on it, shaped like the letter “Q”.

The logo winds up like an actual jet, and when I search for a flight, it’s already got today’s date and the closest airport filled out.

So if I’m in San Francisco, SFO would come up. I’ll tell it that I want to go to London tomorrow, and in 40 seconds, it will tell me every flight to London tomorrow with the price for each flight.

I can then choose one, book it, and I’ve got the ticket in my hand.

Now what can I do with the app once I’ve got that ticket? It can tell me when to check in, it’ll tell me the departing date, whether the flight is delayed, show me the way in and out the airport, and it’ll show me every hotel around at the press of a button.

It’s also got the best seat configuration of everyone - I’ve got 900 different airplanes.

The seats are color coded to help you figure out where the best seats are, so you’ll know where to sit on every airplane.

You can search by airline or search for whatever aircraft you’re looking for.

If you haven’t purchased a ticket with Quicket, you can take your boarding pass, scan it in, and use all of our services, including the seat configuration and maps showing you the way out of the airport.

It’s quicket.to, and it works on whatever you’ve got: iPhone, Android, Windows, and more.

 

Written by:

-       John Ma

-       2016

-       Lounge Buddy

Your Facial Powder - Tara Durotoye

Powders are considered to be the icing on the cake for a flawless foundation finish. It is used as the finishing touch to a complete makeover. Powder sets the makeup and keeps it looking fresh; also   preventing shine. It should be used sparingly; otherwise skin looks dry and unnatural. Look for powders that offer skincare benefits. The newest type will self adjust to oil and moisture or hydrate the skin with water based technology.

Image: Saleha Abbasi

Image: Saleha Abbasi

Pressed Powder: Compact and concentrated, or pressed powders can be used alone to even out and smoothen skin and to matte shine. When used over foundation, it adds a smooth finish. Pressed powders come in compact form, making touch-ups easy anywhere.

Loose Powder: Lighter in texture than the pressed powder, loose powder leaves a more natural finish but is a bit messy to work with. Apply with a large powder brush and shake excess powder off the brush then “dust” your skin using the lightest possible strokes.

- Tara Durotoye

House of Tara

 

I Have Lost Weight Before

“Gabriel, do you think the way you are treating your body, you will live to be over a 100 years as you hope to?”

This was the jolt I needed to live healthy. The punch was delivered by my wife. Guys, if your wife says something is bad, better believe her. She sees your blind spot. With this in mind I decided (more like realised) I had to take off the weight. This was 2013 and I weighed 98kg (216 pounds). I kept away from food, ran long distances and lifted weights.

Caveat emptor: I do not like to exercise for exercise sake. I must derive joy at something else while exercising. Exercise for me has to be infused with something I love. I play soccer for the thrill of it. I walk/jog/cycle because it gives me some thinking space. Most times I have to be listening to something already scheduled. There is no swimming in my itinerary. The simple reason is the absolute and undebatable fact that I am not a fish. "If God wanted me to swim, He should have given me gills." This is a lie one of my good friends told me, and I have chosen to believe. Till date both of us cannot swim. We are actively looking for our gills.

My efforts in 2013 ended in 2014 and in one year, I lost 9kg (about 20 pounds). 

I left it at that and went on living my life as usual. My life had other complications. I was drafted into a new team at work with a steep learning curve. We transited from one enterprise software to another and I added to that combo, an educational pursuit.

My working and waking hours was out of this world. Well, I had to deliver on my corporate and personal goals. Both were important. Exercise was deleted from that list of goals. Long working hours also meant I needed to keep the energy level high. I ate at odd hours, snacked at will and you know what happens when all these come together.

Circa 2016, I was back to, not 98kg, but 102kg (225 pounds). What happened? What did I do to myself? Well, if you read the paragraph above this one, you will see that the old lingo, “garbage-in = garbage-out,” is true. QED. In Nigerian lingo “if you do anyhow, you will see anyhow”.

So, in December 2016, I started another journey of weight loss and healthy living. I have lost 7kg (15 pounds) so far. It is a work in progress. From the BMI stats, I am suppose to be 76kg to be of normal weight. I am 95kg presently and I have to lose about 19kg more. Well, I am not going to do that. This is what I have purposed to do: stop at 86kg. That gives me a BMI of 28 (mid-range of overweight). I will be fine with that.

A few things have changed between my first attempt and my current endeavor. I have also learnt a thing or two along this journey. I will enlist them:

1. Seek to live healthy and all other things will follow. Check your portions. Eat right. Ask yourself “what do I need to do to achieve what I want?” That simple mental exercise can lead you to the right answers. The weight will fall off. You will feel better. You will know what works for you. Do it when you discover it.

2. Moderation is Key. Don’t forbid anything except things you know you are allergic to. Eat what you want to eat. Ensure you are not overindulging. Go for a balanced diet. If you know something is bad for you, then by all means leave it out. If it has a lot of calories, then it has to be taken in small doses.

I believe in moderation. I am not on any special diet. My biggest issue with the diet fads is when people tell me not to eat this and that. Sugar, salt, oil, fats, proteins, vegetables etc are not the problem. Excess and disproportionate consumption of any of them is the problem. The moral of the story: anything done in excess will become a problem. Even life in itself is moderated. You don’t sleep 24 hours. Neither do you work for 24 hours. 

3. Don’t Deceive Yourself! I see people who eat whatsoever and believe they will burn the calories off. Ehm! Don’t give yourself more work to do. Your work is already cut out for you. Deal with that. Your body is a very intelligent machine. It adapts to you. Overstretching it leads to wear and tear. Wear and tear is also known as diseases, aches, blisters etc.

4. Talk To Your Doctor: Based on your medical history, he/she will have some advise. The person can give you the implication of certain exercise routines. I think it is a good idea since we are talking about health.

5. Don’t’ Wait For A Health Scare. Amongst those I meet on my walking routines and who have lost significant weight, I heard the same story over and over again. Some health scare drove them on this path. "My body is…and so I have to lose weight." If it is within your powers, try not to get there before you start taking your health seriously.

6. Incorporate Exercise Into Your Life. Little steps, here and there helps. We are not getting younger and it is most unlikely that your daily job will involve a lot of walking or climbing. Burning calories starts from the plate and continues in the gym.

weight.jpg

7. Make It 'A Life Style'. I think this has been the best thing that has happened to me on this journey. Watching what I eat and regular exercise is now routine. No more excuses. It is easy to lose a fantastic amount of weight in a short period. The real task is keeping the weight off. A lifestyle will help you with that. It is called 'Sustainable Development'.

As you might have discovered, I am not a health expert. I know very little about nutrition. I cannot predict how your metabolism will work, but I see the confusion from the various diets and diet plans. I just eat food, watch the calories and stay active.

My take on health is the same on finances; traditional economics always works at the end of the day. Fanciful economics led to Enron. I was taught the concept of balance diet as a kid. It has not changed. The traditional balanced diet in the right proportions will deliver what it promises  — keep you healthy and fuel you with the required energy. After eating, keep moving even if you are not Johnny Walker.

I have pontificated enough; let’s get to living healthy

Gabriel Omin

gabomin@yahoo.com

 

 

 

Concorde - Once upon a Supersonic Aircraft

The history of aviation and aeronautics will be incomplete without giving due reference to Concorde, an amazing aviation invention.

Today, aviation enthusiasts are fascinated by aircraft like the long haul Airbus 380 jumbo jet and the Boeing 777 Dreamliner.  However, in the 1970s, right up to 2003, when it was retired, Concorde was the aircraft of choice and fascination, and travelers eagerly looked forward to their personal “Concorde Experience”.

Concorde was a project conceptualized, developed and manufactured by the British Aircraft Corporation (BAC) of the United Kingdom and Aerospatiale of France. 

The name Concorde, which means harmony or union, aptly reflects the co-operation between both countries in developing the aircraft. In the UK, it was simply known as Concorde, without an article like “the” or “a”.

It was a turbojet powered supersonic passenger aircraft that could travel at a maximum velocity of over twice the speed of sound (Mach 2.04 or 1,354mph/2,180kmph).

Concorde sat 100 passengers, and was highly favored by wealthy passengers; celebrities, royalty and business executives who could afford the significantly high price in exchange for the ‘Concorde Experience’ of speed and luxury service.  Although it lacked inflight entertainment and reclining seats, much was compensated by seamless quality service through the entire experience; dedicated check-in counters, ultra fast track through to boarding, all star on board meals, and of course, leaving London at 8am, and arriving New York early enough to go to bed before heading to work at 8am.

Photo: nms

Photo: nms

Air France and British Airways were the only airlines to purchase Concorde. This was largely due to the fact that although it was an aviation icon, it was commercially flawed, and never met the original sales projections, despite initial interest from several airlines.  Concorde flights originated from London Heathrow and Paris Charles De Gaulle Airports only.  A typical Trans-Atlantic flight to John F. Kennedy Airport in New York, and Dulles airport in Washington amongst other destinations took less than half the time a regular commercial flight took.  Precisely three and a half hours to New York.

Photo: sur la terre

Photo: sur la terre

From an engineering perspective, Concorde was simply amazing; it flew up to 60,000ft.  At this height, it was possible for passengers to see the curvature of the earth. The aircraft stretched between 6 and 10 inches during flights.  This was as a result of the intense heat generated by the airframe. Every surface on the aircraft, including the windows was warm to the touch after a flight.  The aircraft was actually painted in special white paint to help cool the plane after a supersonic flight.

Photo : aronline

Photo : aronline

Concorde provided the ideal flying option for the very busy business executive, as it afforded the opportunity and convenience to meet same day appointments in Europe and America.

Sadly, the aircraft was retired in 2003 as a result of declining patronage due to environmental concerns, high oil price, as well as the Concorde crash of 2000 in Paris.

Some Facts About Concorde

·      Concorde was developed and built by British and French engineers, as a result of a treaty by both countries.

·      20 Concordes were built, and 14 flew commercially

·      The first Concorde, 001 was built in France, and made its first test run on the 2nd of March 1969.

·      The second Concorde, 002 was built in United Kingdom, and first flew on the 9th of April 1969.

·      Its first commercial flight was from Heathrow to Bahrain, and from Paris to Rio on January 21st 1976.

·      Concorde travelled at more than twice the speed of sound with a loud rumble so noisy that it was not allowed to fly over some countries, such as Saudi Arabian, so it doesn’t affect their camel breeding.

·      Its fastest journey was New York to London on January 1st 1983, 2hrs and 56mins.

·      Air France recorded its last Concorde flight on May 31st 2003, and British Airways on October 24th 2003.

Where are the Concordes?

The Concordes are on Display in United Kingdom, France, Germany, and United States

British Development Fleet

G-BSST (002) Yeovilton Fleet Air Arm Museum, Somerset, UK

G-AXDN (101) Imperial War Museum, Duxford, Cambs, UK

G-BBDG (202) Brooklands Museum, Weybridge, Surrey, UK

G-BOAA (206) Museum of Flight, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

G-BOAB (208) Heathrow Airport, London, UK

G-BOAC (204) Manchester Airport, Manchester, UK

G-BOAD (210) Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum, New York, USA

G-BOAE (212) Grantley Adams Airport, Barbados

G-BOAF (216) Aerospace Bristol, UK

G-BOAG (214) Museum of Flight, Seattle, USA

French Development Fleet

F-WTSS (001) Air and Space Museum, Le Bourget, France

F-WTSA (102) Mus�e Delta, Orly, France

F-WTSB (201) Airbus, Toulouse, France

F-BTSC (203) Crashed (read Final crash report here)

F-BTSD (213) Air and Space Museum, Le Bourget, France

F-BVFA (205) Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, USA

F-BVFB (207) Auto & Technik Museum, Sinsheim, Germany

F-BVFC (209) Airbus, Toulouse, France

F-BVFD (211) Broken up, 1984

F-BVFF (215) Charles de Gaulle, Paris, France
Ref: Club Concorde

Will Concorde Ever Return?

It will be nice to see a return of this iconic supersonic aircraft. 

Were you privileged to fly the Concorde?  Please share your ‘Concorde Experience’ in the comments box.

- Terence Mc Arthur

“We’re going to take you to the edge of space, where the sky gets darker, where you can see the curvature of the Earth, we’re going to travel across the Atlantic twice the speed of sound, faster than a rifle bullet, 23 miles every minute, we’re going to travel so fast we’re moving faster than the Earth rotates and the world will be watching us.”

- Mike Bannister - Prior to the last commercial Concorde passenger flight (G-BOAG) from NewYork to London Heathrow JFK 2003

When it Seems Like You Are Losing Out - Ibrahim Olatunji

I write this short piece out of affection, love and passion, also with panic and fear of what our children will become once they hit 10+.

Photo: Devianart

Photo: Devianart

"It's time to go home" said the school security man. 

Sarah looked at the time and snobbishly dashes for her classroom, to join Jane and Peter, so that they could chat and then go watch the basket ball game.
Sarah obviously wasn’t ready to go home. 
Hanging out with her friends was more important than going home as mum instructed.

Hello,

My name is Scribble and I am here again with words of encouragement as regards the task of raising our children.

Have you noticed the following traits as your child hit 10+ 

  • They Confide in friends, instead of YOU.
  • They tend to be independent at learning even when you offer to help with homework knowing that he/she might be struggling with it.
  • They acting before thinking as pointed out in the above scenario.

This topic is very crucial and dire, because without help our parenthood will be put to the test. 

Below are some handy tips, while we are on the journey of parenting our pre-teens:
1. Never assume you know your children 100%. Remember, they are growing and will most likely pick up different behaviors as they go along. Always approach your children expecting to learn something or discover something new each time.
2. Be close. Be friends. 10+ children need friends; you may not be able to breach some gaps if you treat every issue from a parent’s point of view. This does not mean they wont rebel. 
3. Set boundaries and be firm. Pre-teen will always push boundaries. 
Establish who the ‘boss’ is. Who is in charge?  
Always reprimand and let them understand you are in charge. 
However, do it with love so that they come to terms with respecting authorities.

These are just tips from Scribble, the School teacher

Your Scalp - Dandruff. By Dr. Shabihul Hassan

Dandruff is the excessive shedding of dead skin cells from the scalp.  It is normal for skin cells to die and flake off on a regular basis, and this goes unnoticed. In some people however, skin cells die and flake off at an unusually high rate. This is seen in the form of whitish flakes that fall off over the neck and shoulders, and even over the forehead and eyebrows in severe cases.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Pinterest

Dandruff simply does not go down with black clothing, and can be very embarrassing when someone brushes off white flakes of dandruff from the shoulders of your beautiful black dress.

In people with dandruff, the cell turnover, especially on the scalp becomes unusually rapid; and these cells get trapped in the excessive sebum (oil) being produced, forming  a white, flaky, powdery, dry substance that keeps powdering off onto your shoulders after combing.

Traditionally, dandruff is regarded as very dry scalp, but in reality, it is a very oily scalp with a large number of trapped dead skin cells forming a crusty whitish layer that peels off.

The specific causes of dandruff are not clearly understood. It may be the result of several factors including an overproduction of sebum, a rapid turn over of cells, and individual susceptibility.

Dandruff is not genetically inherited in the classical sense, but its prevalence is higher in some families.

Malassezia furfur is a fungus which is a normal resident on our skin. In people with dandruff it grows out of control, feeding on the excessive oil secreted by the hair follicles, causing irritation and increased cell turnover.

It is not very clear, whether fungus causes dandruff or the dandruff encourages the growth of the fungus. 

Photo: curlcentric

Photo: curlcentric

It is however definitely present in large numbers in many people with dandruff.

Dandruff does not cause hair loss except in very severe cases, in which there is itching, it is more of a social embarrassment rather than a disease. It is not an infection and it is not contagious.

The treatment is limited to the use of a few well known Shampoos.

Shampoos that contain Zinc Pyrithione can be used in the milder cases, two to three times in a week. Others with Selenium Sulfide and Ketokenazole are very effective in the more severe cases. 

It is best to discuss with your doctor before selecting the appropriate shampoo; though there are many other home remedies and off-the-shelf products. 

Cultivate the habit of choosing scientifically proven ways to take care of ailments, including  acne and dandruff;  no matter how overactive your oil wells become, either on your face or on your scalp.

Your hair along with your nails are your best jewelry. You should not use any chemicals on them than is absolutely necessary.

 

Dr. Shabihul Hassan

+234 806 016 4004

drhassansclinic@yahoo.co.in

Yes, You Can Make a Dessert

Crème Caramel

½ l full fat milk

300 g sugar

4 egg yolk

1 whole egg

Vanilla essence

Nutmeg 5 cl Rum (optional, to taste)

Water

Put 200 g sugar into a saucepan and add 3cl (2 table spoons) of water.

Heat until the sugar is melted and turning golden brown.

Pour 2 tablespoons of caramel in each of 4 small ramekins or soufflé dishes.

Allow to harden inside the ramekins.

Mix the 4 egg yolk and the whole egg with the milk, add 100 g of the sugar and whip until the sugar is fully dissolved in the mix. Pour the mix on top of the hardened caramel inside the ramekins.

Pre-heat the oven at 120 degrees Celsius. The ramekins have to stand in water on a hors d’oeuvre dish (or a deep baking tray); the water should cover the lower half of the ramekins.

Bake on the lower shelf of the oven for 30 minutes.

Remove and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

To serve, pass a knife around the inner edges of the ramekins and turn upside down, placing both crème and sauce on dessert plates.

Enjoy Your Home Made Dessert!

- Chef Victor

Restaurant

7 Ganges Street

Maitama. Abuja

Parenting - Words of Affirmation Vs Words of Discouragement By Ibrahim Olatunji Balogun

"Why are you crying like a baby?" 
" Why is he behaving like a baby?"

These questions were questions I heard during a session in a class. Mind you, I was in a 2 year old class.

According to dictionary.com, a baby is defined as an infant or a very young child.

As adults, we are responsible for the fostering of any child in our care. We are also responsible for the motivation of the children we come across; in our community, school. Rather than naming Tom, Jack or Okon a baby, understand the needs of the child. 
Encourage them if they are yet to meet a certain target, and most importantly, use words of affirmation like "you are such a big boy" or " Big girls don't cry".

Words of affirmative are positive words, which when spoken to an individual, motivates encourages, stirs up repentance, thereby change.  
The truth is, parents are short on this fact.

Hitting, whacking, slapping and pushing are negative and irrational ways to approach or resolve conflict when dealing with a child.

"spare the rod and spoil the child" 

We are all conversant with the saying above. As a matter of fact, parents and teachers use this statement a lot to back up smacking and beating a child. 
However, this technique/manner/approach is only a temporary solution. 
We want permanent solutions right? 
Okay, let's see some tips which have worked for me over the years as a Year 6 Class Teacher.

1. "Knowledge is Power" - The Street Hawker.
Reading and accumulating knowledge is not illegal yet, so why are you not doing it? 
Which books do you read about raising and understanding kids? Psychology books. 
Where do you get them? Download or read them from the internet or visit a book store.
My all time favorite book is (Why You Act the Way You Do, by Tim Lahaya).

2. The Carrot and Stick method.
The carrot and stick method should be taken literally. 
The carrot for motivation, the stick for gentle correction. 
Let me explain a little further before it is misinterpreted as the Stick and Carrot method. 
When your child requires correction, be firm, yet loving. 
Be direct but calm. 
Never correct your child when you are angry. Do it afterwards. The carrot means, after correcting and explaining to your child what they have done wrong, give them a treat. This will serve as a form of encouragement.

3. Understand your child
Understanding your child develops with having a personal relationship with your child. 
Know what he/she wants, like and understands. 
Parents usually assume they know what their children wants, therefore misinterpreting certain signs and traits. 
Take the weekend off to spend time with your child. Go bicycle riding, swimming, play a video game, do anything to bond with your child; make the effort to understand him/her.

These tips are not casted on stone. You can read up on tips on dealing with your child. Don't forget to include the age group because children at certain age display individual character traits.


It's me, Scribble.
Ahoy.

- Ibrahim Olatunde Balogun and a teacher with a twist.
'The just ONE teacher'

Managing Stress in Troubled Times - The Sound of Silence - Executive Stress Clinic - Dr. Yomi Garnett

In this article, I am offering you a gift from my book titled: “THE BISHOP’S TESTAMENT: A classic tale on the spiritual basis of wisdom and wealth consciousness”

In this book, which is a first-person narrative of my year long encounter with a great ecclesiastical personage, simply referred to as THE BISHOP, is a most illuminating chapter on spiritual meditation. What I now offer you are excerpts from this chapter whose contents will teach you the enormous utilitarian value inherent in the application of meditation as a great stress-reducing tool, and although the subject is approached from the Christian view point, its basic principles will be of equal and inestimable value to people of other faiths.  I invite you to enjoy the literary excursion.

................Between the bedroom and the study was another door, and The Bishop opened this to reveal a small room about a quarter the size of the bedroom. The only furniture in this room were two small tables, each with a lone chair. On each table was a clean sheet of paper and a pen. The room was very cool and I could see two vents in the roof from which air-conditioned air came in soundlessly.

The walls were completely covered by some sort of leather padding interspersed at regular intervals, both vertically and horizontally, by large buttons. It was a beautiful room, principally because it was all done up in a pristine white colour. Everything in the room; the tables and chairs, walls, roof, and even the marble floor, were of a brilliant white colour.

Seeing my look of appreciation, he murmured audibly, “White, the eternal colour of purity.” We sat down of the two chairs, adjacent to each other. “This is my thinking room”, The Bishop explained. “Any man who will aim for extraordinary feats ought to have a room like this, to which he can retire at least twice a day for contemplation and meditation”.

Photo: escaperoommaster

Photo: escaperoommaster

“This is also my meditation sanctuary. I retire here twice a day to go deep into myself, to mediate. As you can see, the room is completely sound proof, and even the air-conditioned air comes in soundlessly from a central cooling system. The paper and pen are kept in anticipation of sudden and unexpected inspiration, for inspiration can be very fleeting indeed.”

The room was eerily quiet, and the profound soundlessness can only be illustrated with the phrase: ‘as silent as a grave yard’. He looked at me and asked, "Son, have you ever heard the sound of silence?" “The sound of silence? What was the man talking about. How could silence have a sound which described its very own nature? I nodded in the negative. “Listen very carefully. You will soon hear it.” I sat very still, listening. But, of course, I could hear no sound. After a couple of minutes, however, the realization hit me. The silence was so profound, unlike anything I’d ever experienced, that the very experience of it was deafening, and certainly, almost frightening. I looked over at him and nodded. “That is the sound of silence,” he said simply. “Many years ago, there lived a man called Pythagoras. He was a great mathematician. He authored, you might recall, the famous Pythagoras theorem. He was however also a great philosopher. He once said, and I quote, “learn to be silent. Let your quiet mind listen and absorb” Indeed, son, silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves, as Carlyle, another great thinker said.”

He continued. “Power lies at the heart of tranquility. Are you aware that at the centre of the great typhoons of Asia, and even cyclones, lies a very calm centre? Well, this is where the power of those winds really lie, and as surely as power lie at the centre of a cyclone, so does power lies in that silent, centre of your being where your mind and soul meet God”

“Initially, the experience of silence can be quite unsettling. Your internal dialogue will tend towards even more turbulence and you will feel an intense need to talk. Infact, some of my pastors have confessed to a feeling of urgency and anxiety when they first stated learning to commune with God in silence and meditation. But as time passes, your inner dialogue will begin to quieten.”

“Also, in our lives, silence and calm connote relative peace and stability. Anytime we go through turbulence, don’t we usually crave a return to the crisis-free tranquil times?"

“Sir, what does it really mean to meditate?”

“Meditation has been a spiritual practice known to man from time immemorial. It involves intense concentration on a word, prayer, a phrase or a bible verse to the exclusion of all other thoughts. In a way, meditation is very much a cerebral process because it is the art of thinking about not thinking. It allows the mind to experience more and more abstract levels of the thinking process, and ultimately when you have mastered it, to transcend to another and more abstract level of awareness, what I choose to call ‘spiritual consciousness’

“Son, as a physician, you will appreciate my more mundane reference to the effects of meditation on one’s physiology. Scientific studies have proven that the consistent practice of meditation has beneficial effects such as: Blood pressure is lowered, basal metabolic rate goes down, and stress is alleviated. Meditation is also known to counteract states of extreme anxiety and other psychosomatic disorders. And because during meditation, there is increased brain wave coherence, there is a marked improvement in attention span, creativity, learning ability and memory function. Meditation is a spiritual discipline you will have to work on for the rest of your life, since it is not a flash-in-the pan type of activity. Each time you meditate, you become a calmer person, since your internal dialogue and turbulence quitens down through your absolute focus on just a prayer or a bible verse, and because of this calming effect, the effects of meditation last into one’s daily activity, and soon, after a few years, your activity tends to become saturated and influenced by the serenity, tranquility, graciousness and God-like regality that you carry over from your sessions of meditation. How can you possibly, in a meditation, say out the name of God two hundred times, constantly for two years and not develop God-like qualities? This is because by a conscious experiencing of spirit we become it, and once we become it, we begin to embody all its characteristics and properties.”

“Are you saying, Sir, that in meditation, it is always better to repeat the Name of God, over and over again?”

“Each person will have to determine what suits him best for a meditation. Take me for instance. I would sometimes take a bible verse and repeat it over and over again, and at other times I would simply repeat GOD over and over again. It is because I have used bible verses in my meditations over the past two decades, and don’t forget that in meditation the subconscious mind is at it’s most receptive to information, that, as you rightly observed, virtually all the contents of the Bible are now familiar to me. It is in meditation that you turn a new verse over and over in your mind until you come to a full comprehension of its meaning and essence. It is also in meditation that you say very fervent prayers, petitioning God, and asking for His blessings.”

“Meditation needn’t necessarily be a complicated process, and its insinuation into your daily spiritual routine ought to be equally simple. My own routine should serve as a guideline for you. I have found that the best times for me to practice quietness are those times when the rest of the world is still asleep, or about to go to sleep. Consistently, for the past twenty years or so, I have woken up at 4am to meditate for thirty minutes. I also meditate at 11:30pm for thirty minutes before retiring to bed, at midnight except of course for those times when I am unavoidably compelled to effect an alteration in this schedule. Usually, I would have during the day decided on my subject of meditation. It might be a bible verse, or perhaps even a new teaching. My first meditation for the day is at 4am when I awaken. I use this meditation to put my petitions before God. In it I express my desires and ask God to show me favour and bless me with my heart’s desires, believing with faith that those desires have been granted. With the firm conviction that having created in the spiritual realm, all I have to do is simply wait for manifestation in the physical realm I call this my meditation for manifestation. It is also in this meditation that I engage in the creative visualization of what I want manifested in my life.”      

I interrupted the great man.

“Sir, I can imagine how powerful such visualization will be in meditation, since as you earlier mentioned, it’s during meditation that the subconscious is at its most receptive to information.”

The Bishop beamed at me, obviously quite pleased at my astute grasp of the subject. “Precisely, son, precisely. Your observation becomes even more valid when you realize that subconscious activity, which is at its peak during meditation, is especially receptive to images and mental pictures.”

“At 11:30pm I do another meditation. The day having ended, usually on an auspicious note, I focus mainly on expressing gratitude for all that manifested during the day. I thank God for his mercies on me throughout the day, expressing no desire at all. I merely say ‘thank you, God,’ over and over again. And because of this, I call it my meditation for gratitude.

Gratitude is the most potent platform for invoking more of the Father’s blessings.”

“Of course, son, sometimes during the day, I escape to this room just to experience silence and to rejuvenate my soul. Also, anytime I have a major decision to take, I retire here, sometimes for hours on end, to empty my mind and place my self wholly at the disposal of the Holy Spirit, to guide me, and to counsel me.”

With this, The Bishop and I lapsed into a lengthy silence which lasted for about an hour. For me though, the tranquility was so profound that I fear I must confess with some shame that I fell into a blissful sleep and only came awake at the sound of a discreet cough from my mentor. “Now, son, let us go into the practical aspects of meditation.”

As I adjusted myself, imitating him, to seat more comfortably he continued.

“Remember that meditation is simply the act of being quiet with yourself and shutting down the constant, mindless monologue that fills the inner space of your being.” His voice dropped to almost a whisper as he tutored me. “Sit comfortably, placing your hands on your thighs near your knees, closing your eyes. Take long, deep breaths and exhale. Become aware of your pattern of breathing and the filling of your lungs filling with air. As you exhale, consciously feel your muscles relax with each exhalation. Deep muscular relaxation is the prelude to relaxing your mind. As your muscles relax, you will continue to say your word, or prayer, or bible verse continuously, so as to keep your mind from wandering. The mind is like an untamed animal, so you must continue to gently, but firmly bring it back to the present moment anytime it threatens to wander. Your natural self abhors discipline of any type, and it is at this time that you’ll remember that you have to take the car for repairs tomorrow, or you have to visit your troublesome mother –in-law. Don’t let such distractions bother you much. Anytime your mind wanders, just bring it back, repeating your prayer or verse, over and over. With practice, you will soon become adept at this elementary form of discipline. And of course, your body is feeling more and more relaxed. Soon you will feel yourself sinking into a profound state of relaxation, both in body and in mind. You will start to experience an uncommon sense of bliss and peace with your Creator. Blot out all conceptual thought and fix your mind on your prayer or verse. When you are sufficiently relaxed, you may no longer need to repeat your prayer or verse, and you can start praying. If it’s a meditation for manifestation, present your requests to God, asking Him to bless you and show you favour. While saying your prayer, add the mental picture of what you want manifested in your life. In your case, I’d like you to see your book being successfully published and its eventual emergence on the market occurring with a resounding success. Don’t focus on the details. Just see the book in your mind’s eye going through all the expected processes. It’s left to your faithful God to orchestrate all the details. Your role is simply to trust absolutely in Him. “If, on the other hand, this were your manifestation for gratitude, you would simply be thanking God for all that has manifested in your life. You would mentally picture all that you have received from God, and say ‘thank you, Father, ‘over and over.’ Try and experience that God is pleased with your expression of gratitude and even smile with pleasure at this knowledge. Now, son, I shall stop speaking. We shall spend the next hour in a meditation for manifestation, and the next hour in one for gratitude.

And with this, I joined my mentor in what was to turn out one of the most deeply satisfying and soul-enriching exercises I’d ever undertaken in my life. I was to adopt this discipline with uncommon affinity and passion, and it remains with me to this day. Friend, it is my fervent and sincere hope that my precise recount of the events of that day will have the same tremendous impact on your own life. It was during that day’s session with The Bishop that a still, small voice instructed me to write a book titled: ‘The sound of silence’  I was to follow through on this directive a few years later.

 

 

How Do I Find The Right School For My Child?

“I can't find a good school anywhere.”
“Am I sure this school is right for my child?”
“I need a school that will take the stress of me and take care of my child.”

These are questions parents ask teachers, friends and other family members from time to time. 
Some parents are looking for a school with a difference. 

Below are 3 different categories of parents; if you are a parent, you should fit into one:
1. Some parents look for a school that would fit their social status, and perhaps for the purpose of business ties, opportunities or perhaps networking.
2. Some look for a good school with a good academic curriculum/structure, extra-curricular activities and a good SEAL (social and emotional aspects of learning) Curriculum platform.
3. Some parents look for a school that focuses on strong academics only. 
“...don't worry about social and emotional development. We will cross that bridge when we get there," they say.

Hiya,

It's Scribble here again. Finding the right school can be a huge task, if you don't know what to look out for. 
The above list is just a summary of points parents have to ponder upon when looking for a school. 
‘Different strokes for different folks.’ However, lets examine some impeccable qualities a good school MUST have to foster an independent, intelligent and informative scholar. (3 I's).
1. Habit of Leadership
2. Analytical Aptitude and Appetite
3. Engaged Community Citizenship
(Harvard Business School MBA section)

Let's breakdown these 3 qualities and apply them to a school that is meant to produce scholars that can compete anywhere and everywhere. Mind you, we are only looking at number one today.

Habit of Leadership
A school MUST have a system, program, syllabus or scheme of work to foster a leader. Leaders are not forged in warm furnaces; therefore opportunities such as the following can be imbibed.
1. Scholars should be allowed to become prefects at some stage in school regardless of behaviour.
2. Scholars should understand the attributes of being a follower first before becoming a leader of any group.
3. Scholars should be groomed in proper etiquette standards.
4. Scholars should be given the opportunity of express their opinions and stand firmly by facts.
5. Scholars should be given the opportunity to grow Team Spirit mentality.

These 5 tips are not the only yard stick. I am sure there are more we can add to the list. However, if you are struggling to find a good and decent school, no matter its location, fees or opportunities, have these 5 questions or tips in mind.

Scribble (Olatunde Balogun)

When it is Time for Hot Flashes - Dr. Shabihul Hassan

Menopause is the end of a woman's menstrual cycle and fertility and is a normal condition that all women experience as they age. It occurs when the ovaries no longer produce estrogen and progesterone, two necessary hormones for a woman's reproductive cycle to function.         Though it naturally occurs with age, menopause may also come on suddenly as a result of a surgical procedure, treatment of a disease, or illness. In these cases it is referred to as induced menopause.                                                                                  

Photo: shmg

Photo: shmg

The human menstrual cycle, the time from the onset of one menstrual flow to the beginning of the next, is a fascinating cascade of hormonal events. It involves a complex and regular change in female anatomy and physiology over an approximate monthly time period. This cycle commences at puberty (menarche) and ceases at menopause. Within every woman this amazing cycle of life is programmed from the very moment of her conception.                                                                                                                      The programming begins when a baby girl is only one month old in her mother’s womb. At that time, the eggs in her ovaries, which were at their most primitive stage (then called germ cells), begin to multiply, numbering about 7 million by about the 7th month of pregnancy. However, from then on, as they mature to the next stage, they begin to die and only 2-4 million primary oocytes (an immature egg) remain at birth. These oocytes mature to primordial follicles, and by the time a girl has her first period she has 100,000 to 400,000 follicles (each ovarian follicle is a hollow ball of cells with an immature egg in the center). Each follicle ultimately matures into an ovum (egg), which is released at ovulation, joins with a sperm and begins a new life at fertilization. This new human being is then nurtured in the womb. Each menstrual cycle is a race because at its beginning, several follicles begin to mature but usually only one makes it to ovulation.                                                                    

The ovaries are glands which are part of the female reproductive system. The ovaries are about the size and shape of an almond and sit just above the fallopian tubes -- one ovary on each side of the uterus. Every month during ovulation, either the right or left ovary produces a single mature egg for fertilization.                                                

On the first day of menstrual flow, the brain receives the signal to begin another cycle. It sends its own signal to the ovary and the follicles in that race begin to produce estrogen. This hormone goes to the lining of the womb, which begins to lay the building blocks to house the expected new guest. The battle belongs to the strong and thus one follicle produces much more estrogen than the rest, leading to the death of the others. This dominant follicle when close to ovulation begins to produce another hormone – progesterone. Progesterone goes to the womb and acts like the cement between the laid-down blocks, making it strong. When the follicle reaches full maturation its ovum is released during ovulation.                                                              

This egg travels down the fallopian tube, hoping to be fertilized. Meanwhile the remnant of the follicle becomes filled with fat and is called a corpus luteum, which continues to make progesterone to maintain the lining of the womb. If fertilization does not occur, then both the corpus luteum and egg disintegrate. Things having fallen apart, the center cannot hold and the lining of the womb breaks down and flows out through the opening of the womb (cervix) and vagina as blood.               

The blossoming or maturity of female characteristics and attributes usually lasts around thirty years, after which menopause or the cessation of menstruation occurs. The anterior hypothalamic nucleus in a cyclic fashion induces the pituitary gland to secrete the hormones FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) and LH (leutenizing hormone) which act on the ovaries and cause the secretion of estrogen and progesterone.

These in turn, induce changes in the uterus, causing menstruation, as well as affecting the other genital organs and the breasts. These changes regulate the aspect, and function of a woman’s hormonal cycle. As the estrogen production in the ovary progressively disappears, the menstrual function also disappears, thus providing an important definitive sign of menopause.                                        The lack of estrogen may lead to an involution of the female genital tract : the regression of the vagina and vulva formations, as well as its dryness and fragility, may make intercourse painful and even impossible. In order to avoid this problem and to preserve their youth, some women resort to estrogens. This is an arguable practice, it may even be dangerous and, it is only advisable under strict medical supervision.                                                                                                 The menopause occurs earlier in single woman than in widows, and earlier in widows than in women who have a normal, regular sex life. The immediate and total stopping of menstruation is only observed in less than one quarter of women which sometimes leads them to think they might be pregnant.

In general the menopause appears as abnormal menstrual cycles, either in their frequency or in their amount: if they are heavy and irregular, this may cause some alarm and it is advisable to see the doctor in order to rule out other pathological causes                                                             

When menopause occurs naturally, it tends to take place anywhere between the ages of 40 and 58, with an average age of 51. But for some women it can occur as early as the late 30s, or as late as their 60s. When menopause occurs before 35, it is considered premature menopause, but just as menarche is genetically predetermined, so is menopause.                                                   

For many women who enter menopause, their menstrual cycle becomes irregular and then stops and they don't have any other symptoms. But, for others, the decreasing levels of estrogen associated with menopause may cause more distressing symptoms including mood swings, decreased sex drive, hot flashes ,sweating ,racing heart (palpitations) ,headaches ,vaginal dryness and soreness, trouble with sleeping, and bone thinning (osteoporosis) .    

These symptoms can last from a few months to up to 10 years.        Menopause is a gradual process. The events preceding and following menopause amount to a huge change for women both physically and socially. Physically, this process has four stages: The premenopause in which their periods have just started to get irregular, but they do not yet experience any classic menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes or vaginal dryness. A woman in premenopause is usually in her mid-to-late 40s. If your doctor tells you that you're premenopausal, you might want to ask him or her how he or she is using this term.                         

The perimenopause refers to women who are in the thick of menopause. Their cycles may be erratic, and they may begin to experience hot flashes and vaginal dryness. On average, women are about 47 when they hit the perimenopause stage.

The menopause technically refers to the final menstrual period. You will not be able to pinpoint your final period until you've been completely free from periods for one year. Then, you count back to the last period you charted, and that date is the date of your menopause. After more than one year of no menstrual periods due to menopause, any vaginal bleeding is considered abnormal.                                                                                                    This term Postmenopausal refers to the last third of most women's lives, ranging from women who have been free of menstrual periods for at least one year to women celebrating their 100th birthday and beyond. In other words, once you're past menopause, you'll be referred to as postmenopausal for the rest of your life.                                                    

Photo: Prima

Photo: Prima

Hot flashes are the most frequent symptoms of menopause and perimenopause.  A hot flash is a momentary sensation of heat that may be accompanied by a red, flushed face and sweating. The cause of hot flashes is not known, but may be related to changes in circulation. 

Hot flashes occur when the blood vessels near the skin's surface dilate to cool. This produces the red, flushed look to the face. A woman may also perspire to cool down the body. In addition, some women experience a rapid heart rate or chills.                                         

Hot flashes accompanied with sweating can also occur at night. These are called night sweats and may interfere with sleep. The severity and duration of hot flashes varies among women going through menopause. Some women have hot flashes for a very short time during menopause. Other women may have hot flashes over many years.

Generally, hot flashes become less severe as time passes.                       While it may be impossible to completely avoid hot flashes during menopause, there are certain triggers that may bring them on more frequently or cause them to be more severe. To prevent hot flashes, avoid these triggers: stress, caffeine, alcohol, spicy foods, tight clothing, heat and cigarette smoke.                                                                                                         Other things you can do to keep hot flashes at bay include: Staying cool (Keep your bedroom cool at night. Use fans during the day. Wear light layers of clothes with natural fibers such as cotton), trying deep, slow abdominal breathing (six to eight breaths per minute). Practice deep breathing for 15 minutes in the morning, 15 minutes in the evening and at the onset of hot flashes. Walking, swimming, and bicycling are all helpful.                                                                

Talk to your doctor about taking short-term hormone replacement therapy, or HRT if your symptoms are very severe. This treatment prevents hot flashes in many women. In addition, it can help other symptoms of menopause, including vaginal dryness and mood disorders. However, even short-term hormone therapy carries some risks, including blood clots and gallbladder inflammation. If HRT is not right for you, there are other treatments that may offer relief. These include both over-the-counter and prescription therapies. It is important to clear any new drugs (including over-the-counter) or supplements with your doctor before taking them.                                                                                                                                         The treatment of Menopause includes a proper understanding of what is going on in your body and medications to control the symptoms if required. Regular consultation with your family doctor is very helpful because all symptoms can be easily managed, with and sometimes without medications.                                                                              

The intense feeling of heat often accompanied with a rise in body temperature is often mistaken for a febrile illness, and it is not uncommon for women to continue visiting hospitals frequently and assuming that they have malaria, typhoid or some other illness. It is also not uncommon for many unnecessary laboratory tests to be conducted.                                                      

It is extremely important for family doctors to counsel their patients about the menopause, especially between the age of 45 and 55.                                                                                                 Many women arrive at their menopause years without knowing anything about what they might expect, or when or how the process might happen, and how long it might take. Very often a woman has not been informed in any way about this stage of life. It may often be the case that she has received no information from her physician, or from her older female family members, or from her social group. In many societies there appears to be a lingering taboo which hangs over this subject. As a result, a woman who happens to undergo a strong perimenopause with a large number of different effects may become confused and anxious, fearing that something abnormal is happening to her. There is a strong need for more information and more education on this subject.                                                                                       It is extremely important that husbands, children and other family members remain conscious of the fact that every women will go through this phase of life and that there may be mood swings, irritability, sudden hot flashes, intense sweating, insomnia, bouts of severe anxiety and depression. Their support at this stage in her life is the best part of her treatment.                    

Within biomedicine, the dominant understanding of menopause may be that of a hormone deficiency, but women going through menopause do not necessarily have to see it that way. They should see it as yet another life event like puberty, adolescence and pregnancy. It is yet another phase of their lives that they should know they will emerge through — with a bit of wear and tear, but with a sense of renewal, a sense of looking forward to the rest of their lives without the immense responsibilities of child bearing and rearing.

 

 

 

 

'Gele' - The Crown of Grace

‘ Gele' is simply a piece of fabric wrapped intricately around the head. It is a complement to the full regalia of the African woman. To a connoisseur, the style of ‘ gele' you wear could determine what part of the Africa you are from, which depends on the fabric texture. Higher and bigger styles are achieved better, with stiff or thicker fabrics. The fitting on the crown also depends on the face type and head shape. A style that looks good on one person may not look good on another.

The crown of a woman is her head and what sits on it and what is contained in it. Her head is the bearer of grace, honor, beauty, and personality. In ancient times the woman had to cover her head as a sign of honor to God when she had to pray or go to the temple. Today, ‘ gele' is the naija-centric symbol of a well dressed Nigerian woman ready for an ‘owambe' (local ceremony).

‘ Fila Oge' (literarily means the cap of style) is another name for ‘gele', head-tie, or head gear. It is a traditional ceremonial head piece that requires special skills to wrap. These days, there are people who wrap head gears for a living, because of the intricacy of making the wrap, pre-wrapped head gears have been innovated, and Customized ones are also made, such that it is kept and stored in hat boxes, for people who can not be bothered with the art of making it from scratch.

There many ways to making head wraps of different styles. Here are steps to making a simple style.

Photo: Kamdora

Photo: Kamdora

1. Fold the head wrap to a width of about six inches. This can be achieved by folding the piece in half lengthwise twice. The softer and smaller the fabric, the easier to wrap for beginners.

2. Wrap the piece around your head with the right extending about one and half of the left side.

3. Tuck in the left piece and keep the tips out while crossing the right piece over; also keep the tip the right piece out.

4: Pull both tips as in making a knot tightly. Tuck in the left tip while pulling the right tip.

5. Tuck in the right piece only from the point where it touches the left piece but without pulling too much.

6: You could turn the bow gently to the front or side, or leave it at the back.

7: Spread out the tips to like a rose petal look, or pin the two tips for a different style.

Photo: pulseng

Photo: pulseng

Play around with your piece of fabric with the mind of coming up with different styles. There is no single way to make head wraps. Create your signature, do your own thing as long as it looks good on you .

Preserve your fabric with spray starch.